Indonesia Tatler - - Life -

Chele Gonzalez

WHY Him? Owner and head chef of Gallery by Chele (for­merly Gallery Vask, which fea­tured twice in Asia’s 50 Best Restau­rants), Chele fuses lo­cal pro­duce with in­ter­na­tional flavours to cre­ate sur­pris­ing dishes in a chic, re­vamped space in Taguig, Manila. His menu in­cludes taste bombs like tomato mochi with salmon and kesong puti (a soft cheese made from the milk of wa­ter buf­falo), and brioche buns with shred­ded Chi­nese beef stew.

NEXT ON HIS PLATE Chele has a num­ber of pro­jects in the pipe­line, one of which will see him take charge of F&B at a new lux­ury re­sort in Bo­ra­cay.

Jordy Nava rra

WHY Him? A pioneer of Filipino fine din­ing, Jordy is the chef-owner of Toyo Eatery in Makati City. In his min­i­mal­ist haven of wood and pol­ished con­crete, he of­fers so­phis­ti­cated ver­sions of hearty lo­cal clas­sics such as Bangsilog—milk fish with sticky rice, free-range egg, chicharon and dried tuna roe. Toyo won Asia’s 50 Best Restau­rants’ The One To Watch award this year, throw­ing a spot­light on con­tem­po­rary Filipino cui­sine and ce­ment­ing Jordy as a ris­ing star in Asia’s gas­tro­nomic land­scape.

Cheryl Tiu

WHY HER? A blog­ger, me­dia per­son­al­ity and food critic, Cheryl is a “taste­hunter” for the World’s 50 Best Restau­rants—the sole rep­re­sen­ta­tive in the Philip­pines and one of only three in Asia. Cheryl wrote the first Wall­pa­per City Guide for Manila in 2014, is a pre­sen­ter on Fox Life Asia’s TV show Taste Trav­els, and founded her own events plat­form, Cross Cul­tures, which pro­motes ex­changes be­tween cul­tures through food to build a global com­mu­nity. This year, she has been fo­cused on pro­mot­ing Filipino cui­sine over­seas, or­gan­is­ing col­lab­o­ra­tions and pop-up din­ing ex­pe­ri­ences that spot­light the na­tion’s gastronomy at restau­rants in Mi­ami, Bos­ton and New York.

Mar­garita Forés

WHY HER? A celebrity chef, restau­ra­teur and TV per­son­al­ity, Mar­garita al­ways has a full plate. The dy­namo op­er­ates a plethora of Ital­ian eater­ies across the Philip­pines, in­clud­ing Cibo (a 10-branch chain of Ital­ian cafes), Alta, Grace Park and Lusso. She re­cently launched two new ven­tures: Las Casas Manila by Mar­garita Forés, which serves clas­sic Spanish cui­sine from a re­vamped her­itage man­sion in Que­zon City, and Is­las Pi­nas, a funky new food hall that show­cases Filipino food from around the coun­try. She also hosted her own TV show with CN, Har­vest with Mar­garita Forés.

Abba Napa

WHY HER? As cre­ative di­rec­tor and restau­ra­teur at the Mo­ment Group, Abba has brought to life some of Manila’s most suc­cess­ful home-grown din­ing con­cepts, such as Bank Bar, 8Cuts, Ooma, Mecha Uma and TMG Test Kitchen, while also in­tro­duc­ing in­ter­na­tional brands like Din Tai Fung and Lin­guini Fini to the Philip­pines. Un­der her watch, the Mo­ment Group re­cently took over the F&B arm of the mem­bers-only Manila Polo Club, re­vamp­ing its menu to in­clude favourites from the group’s port­fo­lio of restau­rants. Abba, a keen skier, hiker and diver, is now fo­cus­ing on ex­pand­ing the com­pany’s boom­ing cater­ing busi­ness.

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